I know art-making makes me happy (as I type that, I remember the time I did a presentation about ‘making art’ and three of my friends came up to me at the end and told me that everytime I said that it sounded like ‘making out’ 😂😅🤣 – anyhoo, both are good).

All you need is something to draw with, and something to draw on.

I recommend starting with regular things, like sketching your keyring on your shopping list, or your earring on an opened envelope.

If you’d like more guidance check out my website and try a ‘Blue Wren’ drawing class, perhaps ‘Shiny Happy Sketching – in Quarantine’, and if you’re still loving it, ‘Shiny Happy Drawing’ is a workshop I’m still proud of after 3 years. It’ll REALLY get you drawing – and happy!

So I’d add just one word to Bob’s quote – I’d say we’re a SHINY happy bunch!

Thank you Injune

Thank you Injune

An ice cream bus showing up at lunchtime? They know how to show a huge group of women a good time at the #injunecreativeodyssey!!!
Great job Sue Pukullus, Fiona Vincent and team! Paul (“Squeezy Man”) and I wrapped up the weekend with the first live class of “Natalie the Koala” and as I predicted, they all came to life at the end (we survived the zombie stage!)
SUCH a wonderful weekend.
Huge thanks to ALL the ladies who painted with me this weekend – keep making magic with colour. I’ll be very proud. xxx

Remember all four of these paintings are also Online Paint Alongs here. 🙂



I’m often asked whether I prefer acrylics to watercolour and I honestly have to say I love them both!
ACRYLICS are great to get stuck into a painting on canvas and hang it straight on the wall. I usually work from darks to lights and can easily alter the painting as I go – just as long as the layer is dry! Acrylic is my first choice for original works to sell.
WATERCOLOURS are SO PORTABLE! I love taking them with me to add colour in my sketchbooks. I love how quickly I can use a brush to capture shapes in watercolour to then draw over in pencil to record a memory. I love that I don’t have to wear ‘painting clothes’ for watercolour! It took me years to embrace using plenty of water though… but now that I’m less worried about the end result, I’m more often delighted with the organic things that watercolour can do.
And you know what? Doing a study in watercolour for an acrylic painting is a quick way to test an idea before committing to a canvas.

Yesterday I painted this month’s acrylic Paint Along, ‘Caravan Dreaming‘ in watercolour for my Shiny Happy Art Club members. ***Often it’s the inspiration that’s the block when you want to learn to paint***, so we use one image to inspire another. It’s no longer acrylic OR watercolour, it is, in the MOST FRIENDLY way, AND.
So don’t limit yourself. If you want to paint, try both. Stay open to the seasons of your art life that you may prefer one or the other, but never close the door completely. There’s too much art joy to be had!
Hope you can paint a little (or a lot) this weekend. And if you need inspo, head over to my website, www.shinyhappyart.com. That’s what I’m here for!
See you in my virtual studio.
New Online Paint Along for July 2021

New Online Paint Along for July 2021

Anna and Caravan Dreaming

I’m delighted to share ‘Caravan Dreaming’.

Quite a few years ago, my sister and her family set off on what was planned to be a 12 month caravan dream holiday.

Except it wasn’t a total holiday. She’d be home schooling her 9 year old son and the two younger ones would be doing their thing… let’s just say they may not have lasted even six months!

The Sydney shopping centre croc-stuck-in-the-escalator incident has become family folklore.


But obviously there were some wonderful memories made, and my sister has wanted me to do a caravan painting ever since.

So Online Paint Along #30 is ‘Caravan Dreaming’ (there you go, Lauren) and it’ll be released on 1 July.  A super colourful one, I’ll show you how to knock back the mountains to show distance, to add BRIGHT shadows, and how to paint quirky chooks!

And you know what? The end of the month is always the BEST time to join the Shiny Happy Art Club.

Not only do you get your FREE Online Paint Along straight away (right now that’s ‘Parisian Flowers’), but your first monthly painting in your subscription arrives super soon (ie. ‘Caravan Dreaming’ on the first of the month – which is only 5 days away!).

Join the Shiny Happy Art Club now.

The true beauty of a Collection

The true beauty of a Collection

Ahh! I love a #collection!

One painting invites scrutiny. It’s easy to pull apart and be critical.

Two are a pair. Your eye is looking for the similarities as well as the things that ‘don’t quite fit’. And they’re often easy to find.

Three? Well that’s a ‘few’ and it’s more impressive. You’ve put some work in here and that’s admirable in itself. Perhaps you know what you’re doing. Because you’ve done it three times.

Four? Oh honey. I’m impressed. Such stamina! You’re feeling good? Great. I can see the improvement between #1 and #4. You’re getting this.

Beyond four? Well that’s the gravy, baby.

And THAT is why I paint Demonstration Collections each month. I commit to do 12. Even if you only do 3 a month you’ll have 36 somethings at the end. A Mighty Collection.

So join in and stretch those creative muscles. I’ll be on FB later tonight or head to www.bit.ly/shabirds50 to get this month’s Demo videos for half price.

So don’t be overwhelmed. Choose your favourites and aim for three. You just might find yourself doing four. You’re welcome.

Aussie Animals Demo Collection